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“10 days at the Riu Palace”

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Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas
Ranked #31 of 71 Hotels in Cabo San Lucas
Certificate of Excellence
Rangely, Colorado
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“10 days at the Riu Palace”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 7, 2014

This was our third stay at this Riu and continue to be impressed with it. Clean, clean, clean!! They even scrubbed the roof of the pool bar one morning. I've read reviews of rooms that smell, but folks that's tropical humidity. I love that smell because it means I'm in Mexico on vacation! The buffet was really excellent. Of course there are the lines on the busy days, but the food was well prepared, lots of vegetables and fruits. One night they had lobster tail and prime rib and it was delicious. Some days they serve tacos or burritos at the pool and they are always good. The pool servers were great. I especially remember Pedro! He makes a really good Crazy Horse and practically runs back and forth waiting on people. The shows are pretty typical of AI resorts, but the Michael Jackson show is really well done. The view from this resort is awesome. You can see the arches, the marina, para sailing, cruise ships, and we even saw whales playing this time. It's too far to walk to town so cab rides are expensive. We were charged $14 each way. I heard someone else say they were charged $3 per person so don't know if there are different companies or what. 10 days was too long of a stay at an AI. We needed to be closer to town or in town for this long of a stay. We didn't pay for an upgraded room, just garden view, but we actually had a view of the ocean. I could see the sunrise in the morning and it was beautiful. We haven't had a bad view in 3 times at this property. What kinds of people will you see at the Riu? Lots of retired people, lots of families on vacation, lots of wedding parties, all kinds of people. Probably 75% Canadians. The place never seems crowded. I did always get up early and save our place at the pool. There are always some available chairs, but if you want your pick you need to get there early. OK, now for some needed improvements... 1) The Riu needs to offer better TV choices. I would have been willing to pay for some movies. Only about 3 English speaking channels and mostly old old movies. Surely they can get satellite TV for their predominately English speaking guests. 2) Throw out the lousy restaurant reservation system. The restaurants aren't that wonderful anyway, just let people come to the door or let them make reservations on the phone! I heard MANY complaints about this from other guests. 3) I prefer the pool water to be a little warmer. All in all a great place to stay, especially for a few days.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank beachlover81648
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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English first
Indianapolis, Indiana
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 6, 2014

This was our third trip to this resort, and I can honestly say it was one of our favorite vacations. We NEVER repeat vacation resorts, and I know this will not be our last time here. This time we were there for 7 nights (Feb 26-Mar 5), and although we knew a lot of what to expect the service exceeded our expectations. We left cold/snowy Indianapolis, IN, to perfect weather in Cabo where it never rains, hardly ever a cloud in the sky, and no humidity.

ROOM: We booked through Carey from Beach Bum Vacation. We booked a garden view room and were given an oceanview room once we arrived (great way to start the vacation with a room upgrade!). We were on the third floor (main floor of the resort where the lobby is) and our view looked directly out towards the ocean with a view of the fountains/infinity pools. It was only about 10 rooms down from the lobby so we did not have to walk far to go anywhere, and we never had an issue with noise. Best room we’ve had yet!

STAFF: This resort exceeds our expectation each time we arrive. Our favorite bartender is Silver (Silverio) who was working at the disco half the week and the plaza bar the rest of the week. All of our friends and family the last trip love Silver as he is so friendly and makes the best drinks. He even remembered what I drank a year and a half ago (still can’t believe that!). We also really enjoyed Miguel and Roberto from the swim-up bar. The staff at this resort is so amazing and will go out of their way to make you feel special. I truly think the staff here makes this resort feel like our home away from home.

FOOD: The dinner buffets were so good. They switch it up every night so it’s worth taking a lap around the dinner buffet even if you are eating at a specialty restaurant. Two different nights the dinner buffet had lobster tails. Just to give you perspective, one night we went down and had dinner (steak/lobster) at Alexander’s at the marina, and the lobster tail at the Riu Palace was MUCH better than our $150 dinner at the marina.

Our last trip here we thought the food was just okay, so we don’t always go on vacation and think the all-inclusive food is good. Last trip we didn’t enjoy Krystal (the fine dining fusion restaurant) because of the atmosphere and fancy food (asparagus mousse, etc.) so that was the only restaurant we did not try this time around. This trip we ate at the Japanese restaurant, Steakhouse, and Mexican restaurant, as well as the buffets. All were very good. We liked the food during our last two trips here, but the food was incredible this time around. Steak at the steakhouse was cooked and seasoned perfectly (lobster at the steakhouse was just alright and was better at the dinner buffet).

DRINKS: The sports bar is opened 24/7 and has the best view. Overall, drinks are really good if you know what to ask for. You have to ask for the good alcohol (Don Julio tequila, Absolut vodka, etc), and they keep it under the bars. If you don't specify what kind of alcohol they will give you the cheaper stuff which won't taste as good. I'm not a fan of the super sweet margaritas and frozen beverages so stuck with mojitos, mixed drinks, and Don Julio tequila shots :) I liked the champagne at this resort, but did not like any of the wines I tried. I met a lot of people who loved the wine there, though I thought it was terrible. Just tasted a lot different than back in the States. Everyone is different I guess! :)

SUNSET DE MONA LISA: In addition to our dinner one night at the marina (was not impressed by Alexander’s), we had dinner at Sunset de Mona Lisa. INCREDIBLE! We went early to watch the sunset (I recommend getting there an hour before sunset), and the staff did not rush us one bit. The service was fabulous and the food was really good. The restaurant is only a 5 minute cab ride from the Riu Palace, and has views of the Cabo arch. This restaurant is a must see! It will not disappoint.

LOCATION: This resort is a 20 minute walk down the beach to the hotels closer to the marina. We walked one morning to Mango Deck/The Office. It’s a steep beach so the walk is harder than it looks, but a cab to the marina is only $12 each way (if you find people wanting to go around the same time you can split the cab fare).

TOURS: We did a whale watching tour that we booked from the booth attached to the hotel down on the beach. It was far cheaper than the tours they try to sell you inside the resort ($55 per person vs. $95 inside the hotel for the same size boat), and the glass bottom boats pick you up right in front of the resort (as opposed to the hotel tours that pick you up from the lobby and take you down to the marina). Our tour was 2 hours long and we saw SO many whales. The nice thing about the smaller boats is that they move faster so those who were in larger boats or catamarans couldn’t follow the whales fast enough when they would change directions.

Room Tip: **Ask for a true king size bed or you'll end up getting two full beds pushed together (with a ga...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank T_Cristina_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Worth, Texas
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 6, 2014

We were staying with a large group from the USA last week and the weather was perfect! I have never been in Mexico when the humidity or the temps were not close to unbearable so this was a very pleasant 4 days. I never give 5 stars to any place that allow children so thats the reason for 4 stars. The VIEWS are incredible!! We saw whales and dolphins and beautiful sunrises and sunsets from our balcony. The rest of my comments would just echo what most people write so here is a short list; Cocktails, beer, and wine are bad tasting, no Coca Cola just Pepsi (YUK) , too many people reserving chairs at the pool all day and never using them, the tile floors are pretty but very noisy, the maid service was barely adequate and the kingsize(?) bed and linens were just plain terrible. I / we did enjoy the food at all locations and the steak place even prepared a yellow fin tuna that I caught for a group dinner. The service in the bars and lobby was very good.

Hope this helps you decide to see Cabo. I think it is the best destination in Mexico. Night life, fishing, cleanliness, modern and traditional shopping and golf courses make it that way. I also felt like it had less of a criminal tint to it than most areas of Mexico, felt safer in other words.

Room Tip: in the middle facing south toward the beach is best
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Weenerdog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 6, 2014 via mobile

I stayed at this hotel Feb20-27/14. Let's start with the Pros first. Check in was easy and your info is given to you on the bus before you arrive. Rooms are clean and spacious. Hotel itself it's spotless. The Buffett is amazing and offers so many choices you will want to try everything. The hotel staff bent over backwards to answer your questions.
The Cons include extremely cold pools. I love water and have always spent a great deal of time in the water. However at this hotel I could not. The water was so cold it made it impossible. The stairs at this resort can be overwhelming for seniors and families with small children. There are 72 stairs from the beach to the main area. Going up and down these stairs multiple times a day is a great work out for most of us, however elderly and families may want to think about this concern. Bathrooms are not plenty at this resort. If you are at the beach or pool area there is only one bathroom 40 stairs upwards.

Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
3 Thank Edmonton78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 5, 2014

Just returned from the RIU yesterday! I'll just go ahead and list some pros and cons.

PRO'S- Check in was so smooth. The ride to the resort was a long one, but the scenery is so beautiful you wont even care. The resort is huge and spotless and the staff see's to it that it remains that way. I stuck with the Mojitos for the entire trip and they didnt disappoint. We did the lunch buffet at San Jose and it was so good, hot and fresh. We went on a whale sight seeing cruise, being from Chicago I had never seen a whale outside of Disney lol so that was fun. The cruise was very reasonable too, I believe about $60 per person. We were given drinks and an amazing lunch, we saw seals, the arch and Lovers beach. The hotel is also situated close to the market/downtown area near Cabo Wabo, that is another plus. The local restaurants are good as well..

CONS- Upon check in we were told that we could upgrade our room to an ocean front- so we did. Before we went to our room the clerk tells us that we were in a quiet area of the resort. LIES. The room we were given was right next to one of the bars and above a club, pool, restaurant and an area where lemons and limes are chopped for a great part of the day and into the late afternoon. To say it was loud, would be an understatement. Naturally we encountered a lot of smoke and screaming which is to be expected considering where the room was located but it was a headache. Next, wifi and cable is free, but it was the crappiest wifi and cable ever. Our TV did not show a clear picture and the wifi did not work during peak hours, which was anytime between 8am and 2am. I noticed that the days we were still up at 3 am, the wifi worked perfectly. RIU is aware of the issue because just as we were leaving for our cruise a cable person came to our room to check it out and even he couldnt help and said there was just no signal for the TV nor the wifi.

The breakfast at El Medano left much to be desired it just wasn't good. Cold waffles and pancakes, stale donuts, even the omelets were bad. I ended up just having fruit and bacon everyday-bacon is impossible to mess up. The fruit is local so its super fresh. Theres also a lunch buffet that doubles as a steak house which was ok. Again, you'll be most impressed with the local fruits, veggies and seafood options. These are the things done well here. The steak house (by night) had superb seafood as to be expected, but the steaks we had were not done well. The food could use some minor adjustments and better execution. We didn't try any of the other restaurants after trying the 2 buffets. The liquor.....these were some of the worst drinks i had ever had, even the wines. I finally settled on the mojito and it was very good, so I drank that the whole time. Also the tub in our room was dirty from the previous guests and the housekeeper refused to clean it for our entire stay. We worked out the entire time and got a little sore, we were hopping to take a bath or least hop in the jacuzzi. No such thing, the jacuzzi is not even heated! Note to RIU staff, it is probably not the best idea to have the water from the pool feeding into the jacuzzi, it defeats the purpose, therefore no guests used the jacuzzi. If RIU made some improvements I would go back, at this point if I went back to Cabo it would have to be with another resort.

Room Tip: Do not stay on the 3rd floor (the main floor) that is the lobby and bar area and the club and anothe...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank London J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glenpool, Oklahoma
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 5, 2014 via mobile

The Rui was wonderful. The food was to die for, excellent servers and service everywhere, beautiful views of the arches from our room. Only negative is that you can't get in the water here due to the undertow. But the pools are great and there are many to choose from.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Ann H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lakeville, Minnesota
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 3, 2014

I just returned from a 7 day vacation at the Riu. What a fantastic vacation. I read all the previous reviews and was so pleasatly surprised.
Rooms- we were in room 1147 and it was amazing- Great view. VERY clean. Everything was fine. Our house keeper was so nice and helpful. Everything was always in perfect order and nothing was ever missing.
Food: If you cant find something you like to eat at this resort , you have serious food issues. The food is very good. Many choices.
The hotel is exceptionally clean. Everywhere you go, people are mopping, sweepingand cleaning.
The pools are spotless and warm. Chairs are plentiful- towel policy is easy to follow
Staff- This is whre the hotel really gets great revies. EVERYONE we encountered was exeptionally nice a helpful. Ceasar at the front desk is awesome and Paul, our poolside bartender couldnt hae been better.
Overall: This is a great resort and I wil be returning next year. The only thing that could havebeen better is if I would have stayed longer

Room Tip: The Oceanfront rooms are worth EVERY DI ME !!! Room 1147 is perfect
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank janet p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas

Property: Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas
Address: Av. Camino Viejo a San Jose | Del Cabo KM 4.5 El Medano Ejidal, Cabo San Lucas 23410, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Baja California > Baja California Sur > Los Cabos > Cabo San Lucas
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#14 Business Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#18 Top resorts Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#21 Romantic Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#22 Family Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#23 Spa Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#26 Luxury Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#27 On the Beach Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas 4*
Number of rooms: 642
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the southern Baja California peninsula, 4.5 km/2.8 miles from Cabo San Lucas. 5-storey building. On the beachfront. Complimentary sun loungers on the beach. 32,000 m2 garden. 3.5 km/2.2 miles from downtown Cabo San Lucas. 40 km/25 miles from the airport. 500 m/1650 ft from a bus stop. Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Amex, Visa, Diners. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas Hotel Cabo San Lucas
Riu Palace Los Cabos
Riu Cabo San Lucas
Riu Los Cabos
Hotel Riu Palace Cabo San Lucas Los Cabos

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